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Arsenal v. Chelsea: EPL Match Thread

After an impressive draw away to title holders Manchester City this past Sunday and a midweek smashing of Coventry City in the Capital One Cup, Arsenal host London rivals Chelsea in what is sure to be a memorable match.

Ian Walton - Getty Images

Arsenal vs. Chelsea
Saturday 29 September 2012, 12:30PM GMT/7:30AM ET/4:30AM PT
Emirates Stadium, Islington, London, England
Form: Arsenal: DDWWD | Chelsea: WWWDW

Good morning! Show of hands, who's still drunk? Who's waking up and realizing that this match will be over before the sun rises in their neighborhood?

Let's get right to this. We passed the test at the Etihad last matchweek as we drew away against reigning league champions Manchester City, and now the squad comes back home to face league leaders Chelsea in a match that, if all goes well, can legitimately thrust Arsenal into title contender conversations. The news of the day is that Chelsea will have club captain John Terry available for selection as he is currently navigating his way through the FA suspension process; Terry faces four matches away and a hefty fine after being found guilty by the FA for racially-abusing Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand.

Arsenal continue to roll with Vito Mannone between the posts thanks to injuries to both Wojciech Szczesny and Lukasz Fabianski. One nice addition from Sunday will be Belgian international Thomas Vermaelen, who uproots Per Mertesacker from the starting XI. Otherwise, the squad selection is virtually the same from their trip to north west. One player to note that didn't make the squad today, after his excellent match against Coventry, is Andrei Arshavin.

Arsenal: Mannone, Jenkinson, Koscielny, Vermaelen, Gibbs, Arteta, Diaby, Cazorla, Ramsey, Gervinho, Podolski

Subs: Martinez, Mertesacker, Djourou, Santos, Walcott, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Giroud

Chelsea: Cech, Ivanovic, Luiz, Terry, Cole, Mikel, Ramires, Oscar, Mata, Hazard, Torres

Subs: Turnbull, Azpilicueta, Cahill, Bertrand, Romeu, Lampard, Moses

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